Magnús Jóhann is an Icelandic pianist and composer that has explored a wide array of styles in his solo work and in his work as a session player and record producer. He is a prominent studio and live performer and has composed music for film, theatre and more. He has released two solo albums, Pronto, in 2016, and Without Listening in November 2020. The latter release he plans to celebrate in Norðurljós with a release concert on the 12th of March.
Without Listening lies on the borders of the organic and the inorganic and blends together composition and improvisation. The album explores many styles and you can hear minimalistic piano, modern jazz saxophone and thundering percussion effortlessly flowing together in a confident way according to critics. “Sakna”, the opening track, is described as such by a critic: “It’s like you’re down at the bottom of the ocean, the composition is that engulfing”. The album was composed and recorded over the course of three years in 2017-2020 in close collaboration with saxophonist Tumi Árnason and drummer Magnús T. Eliassen who will join Magnús Jóhann on stage at the concert. The repertoire will consist entirely of Magnús’ compositions.